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Window of the Month
Our Lady of Grace, Dearborn Heights, Michigan

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Building Name: St. John Cantius Catholic Church (closed 2007)

Studio Name: Detroit Stained Glass Works, The

City: Detroit

Window Shape: 6 (gothic arched, over 2 vertical sections)

Subject/Title of Window: Presentation of Jesus in the Temple

Brief Description of Subject: Window has been repurposed and now resides at St. Catherine of Sienna in Wixom.

Background: This is the fourth of the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary. The Holy Family followed the laws set forth in the Torah (first 5 books of the Bible). In Leviticus 12 there are the laws concerning purification --- food, animals, disease, etc. A woman after childbirth is considered unclean. Some behaviors are restricted for 7 days and for first born it is 40 days including day of birth for a male birth and 80 days for a female birth. This being the first for Mary and a male, she must appear at the temple after 40 days and make an offering of a lamb for a burnt offering and a bird (pigeon or turtledove) for a sin offering. If they can't afford this then they must bring 2 birds. Since the first born was a male they must present the child at the temple and pay a ransom ( 5 shekels) to redeem the child from God. The reason for this presentation stems from the story in Exodus where God says that he will kill all the first born males in Egypt but will spare the first born of the Israelites if they kill a lamb and smear the blood on their door. God will then "pass over" the house, however God will claim the spared one. Thus the need for redemption of a first born male from God in the form of a presentation in the temple (God's house).
The first family goes to the Temple in Jerusalem in accordance with the law for Purification and Redemption. The events that occurred during this ceremony are described in Luke 2:22 -38. According to Luke, there are 2 extra people at the presentation, a prophetess named Anna and Simeon. Simeon had been promised by the Holy Spirit that he would live to see the Messiah. Upon seeing the baby Jesus he took him in his arms and proclaimed the joyous news that the Holy Spirit's promise to him was now fulfilled. His words beginning with "Now dismiss your servant in peace..." has provided the words to a chant named "Nunc Dimittis".
Description of Window: At top is the Holy Spirit, fulfilling his promise to Simeon. Holy Spirit symbolized as a dove (Luke 3:22). Scene is inside the Temple of Jerusalem. On the wall is a curtain that will be torn in two on the death of Jesus (Matt 27:61). A kneeling Joseph has brought the required offering of two birds for the purification. Simeon is seen raising the child. A rather young looking Anna, the prophetess, is standing behind Mary. Next to Mary is a lily plant symbolizing the purification part of the rite as well as the purity of Mary ( she was conceived immaculately - without original sin). The candle Mary is holding has a twofold significance. In the Catholic Church celebration on Feb2 of the presentation in the Temple it became customary to pass out candles to the congregation who would then light them and parade around the Church chanting the "Nunc Dimittis". The lit candle was symbolizing that Jesus was the true light of the world.. This celebration in Catholic liturgy is called "Candlemass".

Inscriptions: Inscription: Ofiarowal Franciszek Pinkos. Translated from Polish: Donated by Francis Pinkos

Presentation of Jesus in the Temple
Presentation of Jesus in the Temple
Jesus in the Temple Window photo by Dave Daniszewski
Jesus in the Temple Window photo by Dave Daniszewski
Jesus in the Temple Window photo by Dave Daniszewski
Jesus in the Temple Window photo by Dave Daniszewski

The MSGC is a constantly evolving database. Not all the data that has been collected by volunteers has been sorted and entered. Not every building has been completely documented.

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